Tuesday, June 26, 2018

Home and Blessed ♡

Welcome Summer!
When my husband and I left for Canada at the end of May
there was not much in the way of beauty gracing our yard,
but upon our arrival home after nearly four weeks of being away
everything is in full bloom.
Surprisingly, our grass didn't burn up with the lack of moisture.
We were told that it was a dust bowl around the property
until God sent a good down pour just days before we arrived home.
One good rain in nearly four weeks, unbelievable, while other states
are getting an abundance of moisture.
Whatever God gives us weather wise, we can look forward to every day
with a spirit of joy and expectation of good things to come,
because as Christians, we can find joy even in unpleasant wet and dreary days.
After unloading the motor home and putting everything away
I was anxious to get my hands in the dirt and plant my flowers.
I knew that I would be better able to press forward
with all the tasks at hand before my knee surgery
if those lovely flowers were gracing our window boxes and yard,
and I was right!
Flower gardening is my therapy, and I can't help but find great joy
in the beauty of flowers.
God's wonderful blessings!

Speaking of my knee ~ I'm scheduled for my knee replacement on July 9th
at 9:30 in the morning, arriving at the hospital quite early (6:30).
It's hard to believe that this is actually going to happen
after 3 1/2 years of putting my knee on hold to look after my parents
and their many health needs.
My husband and I had to attend a class regarding my surgery
and we both found it quite informative. 
The nurse who led the class had me picture a sand dune
that I would be climbing following surgery in the days ahead.
Sand is not easy to walk on, let alone climb.
My personal goal is to reach the top without giving up while
focusing on what it is that I am striving for.
I found it to be quite emotional as I pictured my goal ~ a simple goal actually.
I long to enjoy my days in the simplicity of life without pain.
To do the ordinary every day happenings,
 run with my grandsons, ride my bike, hike and
 walk a long distance with my sweet Donatella.
My baby girl has been deprived of her long mountain walks.

~ This photo was taken on Georgian Bay, quite windy. That tree is permanently leaning ~

 The nurse informed us that climbing that sand dune was not going to be easy,
there will be discouraging days, blue days
and days when we will want to give up and stop therapy all together.
I'm thankful that I have Jesus on my side,
and I know that He will be right there with me through out each and every day.

~ ~ ☆ ☆ ♡ ♡ ♡ ☆ ☆ ~ ~

Our trip to Canada was fast, furious and full with little time to sit alone with God.
This year my husband and I found ourselves working more than resting,
but worth it all because it was a tremendous help to my father-in-law.
While I was hoping to sit on the beach alone with my Jesus, in quietness,
He had other plans for our quiet time together.
There was a whole lot of "quiet time" with Jesus as I sat pulling weeds!

How easy it would have been to allow the devil to steal my joy
and prevent me from enjoying life.
Though I had plans of my own, God's plans are far greater 
and walking in the will of God brings abundant blessings.

My husband and I took the last week of our trip
and made a mini vacation out of it.
We enjoyed going home through Northern Canada around Lake Superior 
and doing some camping in Canada's Provincial Parks.
God's amazing beauty in the landscape, numerous lakes and rock formations
kept us in awe with each new day.
The granite rock was amazing!
Now I see more clearly why there is different colors in a granite counter top.

We both found great pleasure in looking for rocks to bring home
and put in the rock tumbler.
I of course, wanted tiny stones of all colors so I could polish them,
then I will place them in a pretty crystal dish adorned on a lace doily.

Oh! I nearly forgot to share about the crokinole championships.
Don't tell my husband I nearly forgot. {{Smiles}}
After three years of working for 1st place in the Recreational  Doubles
my husband and his dad took First this year!
What a delight for everyone!
I think everybody was delighted for these two
because if you remember, last year my father-in-law became ill with cancer 
and was not able to play.
My father-in-law was the oldest player again this year ~ 90 years old.
Watching these two play was heart warming.
A BIG congratulations to them both!!

For years my husband has asked me to play and participate in the tournament,
but it was something I never really wanted to do,
maybe it's because there's a huge crowd. 
This year there were 120 crokinole boards set up for players,
that's a little intimidating to me.
 I was asked to play as a partner with a gentleman
who was without a partner. 
Sigh...poor guy...how could I say no.
With a little persuasion (plus I felt bad for the guy) I said yes and entered.
While my partner and I didn't take 1st we were 53 out of 90 contestants.
Not bad for a Rookie.
I'm hooked, even purchased some pink discs to practice with
for next year's tournament.
God knew I needed to take the plunge and get over my fears,
so He worked it out making it hard for me to say no,
and I'm thankful he did!
Did I have a great time?
I certainly did!

We were able to enjoy the beautiful sunsets

Canada's many Lakes and Beaches

Kakabeka Falls near Thunder Bay at a Provincial Park
These falls were amazing!
Such mighty power!

This train is a painting on the front of an old building where furniture was made
and is now a Market where you can purchase furniture
and just about anything else.
The illusion of this painting makes you think as if the train is coming out of the building.

One of my favorite things to do while we're visiting family
is spending a day out with my friend/sister-in-law 
Kelly, who blogs over at Homespuns'nHayfields
Kelly and I have always enjoyed shopping together
and she knows all the right places.

We can't forget our numerous visits to Tim Hortons.
We barely cross the border and that's our first stop!

My dear friends ~ thank you for swinging by and saying Hello!
Your visits always, and I mean always, bless my heart ♡
This was a longer post than I had planned,
I do hope you enjoyed your visit.
Enjoy the beauty and glory that surrounds you,
praising God for His many blessings.

~ Debbie ~


Weekend-Windup said...

Well written post with amazing pictures. Wish you get well soon on the knee surgery.

Alessandra said...

You really had a great time! Thanks for sharing with us those peaceful places and wonderful photos

Annesphamily said...

Hi Debbie, not only will I be praying for you as you get ready for your surgery but I will be so happy to visit you here too when you post! Your photo shares were so lovely and I enjoyed this post very much. I tend to talk too much, hee hee hee, so I usually end up writing longer posts than most!
I love those rocks that you can polish and set out on display in your home. So simple and yet so elegant.
I am so happy you participated in the tournament and happy too to see your husband and his dad win it!
I will send you an email too.
My oldest brother is nearly 80 years young. He had his knee replaced and he is like a teenager! Of course, my sister-in-law Joyce keeps a keeneye on him regarding excerise and eating habits.
I wish you a beautiful day and grateful to call you friend.

Marilyn Mathis said...

Such a gracious and precious lady you are. So always self-giving and thoughtful of others. Love to read your posts and see the beautiful photography of the places you have been. They make me want to visit them too. I will be praying for you that your surgery will be successful and you will be able to conquer that sand dune quickly and that the Lord will take every step with you! Hugs.

Joyful said...

Hello Debbie, I'm so glad you made it to Canada and back home again, safe and sound. It sounds like you and your husband were a real blessing to your FIL. Thank God you are both able and willing to do some of the things he can no longer do on his own. I have no idea what crokinole is so I'll have to look it up. I can't believe I've never heard of it, lol. But I'm glad God found a way to get you in the game and help you get over your fears. God bless you Debbie and bring you through your surgery with joy and health.

Ruth Hiebert said...

I may have mentioned it before, but reading your blog, feels like a comfortable visit with a friend. Thank-you for making me feel so welcome and at home.I would like to promise that I will be praying for you during your surgery, but I must be honest.I am leaving on a one week vacation right about that time.I will do my best to lift you up in prayer as the Lord brings you to mind.

Sandi said...

So much to be thankful for! Thank you, Debbie. This was a blessing to read.

Ruth Hiebert said...

Hi,I had to come back.I failed to mention your pictures. You were able to capture some lovely sights. Now that looks like a serious crokinole tournament.If you herein the Thunder Bay Area,it was only a few hour drive to my house, ok about a days drive.

AnnMarie aka Vintage Junkie aka NaNa said...

What a lovely post. So happy you are home safe and sound. Once you get past the therapy for your knee, you will be so happy to be pain free. It is all worth it. Your flowers are gorgeous and will be perfect for you to see when you come home from the hospital.

Lauren @ My Wonderfully Made said...

How WONDERFUL and fun and challenging your weeks have been! So many lovely memories and photos to document it all. Congrats to your hubby -- how excited and proud they must be having taken first place -- and YOU now being hooked haha!! I'll be praying for you the morning of surgery and after. I can tell you that yes, there will be times you'll think "what was I thinking and why did I do this and I don't think I'll ever walk normally again....." but each week gets better and better! Feel free to email me if you need encouragement.

Anne Payne said...

Hello, my dearest friend! I'm so glad you enjoyed Canada and were a blessing to your FIL. But then, what else could you possibly be?! :-)
All the images make my heart swell with wonder! Such beauty on God's Earth. I will try and call soon. Much love~

Lea said...

Oh, it is so good to hear from you. So glad you had some down time included in your time away. You deserve it and I know needed it. I pray you will do as well with your knee surgery as our friend did two weeks ago. He joined us for lunch today, walked in, no walker, cane or anything. He's in PT and doing awesome! I'll sure be praying for you and do let us hear from you when you are able. Blessings abundant sweet lady!!!

Cheryl said...

Your trip sounds lovely, what a fun time. Pictures are beautiful, makes me miss going places with my beloved. Will be praying for your knee surgery and that you can heal fast. Your posts are such a blessing and I needed to be reminded that Satan can't take our joy from us,
Hugs, Cheryl

hobbyloes said...

What a wonderful trip you had. Canada is also a very beautiful country.
Wish you a good knee surgery and a good recovery afterwards.
God bless you.

Debby Ray said...

Oh Debbie...it looks like you had a wonderful time in Canada and your photos are amazing! I am so glad you was able to enjoy this time away before your surgery. I know you will get through your surgery and recovery like a champ...attitude is 90% of the battle and it sounds like you are ready for it! Did you grow those beautiful flowers in that photo? They are stunning! And what is crokinole? I have never heard of that before but I am so proud of you for stepping outside of your comfort zone and playing! My prayers are with you as you have your surgery. dear friend! Hugs and much love!

Creations By Cindy said...

Debbie, so good to see a post from you. Your pictures are beautiful Oh my! Those beautiful flowers! WOW! Your FIL looks amazing for 90. I will write your name on my calendar to pray for you on July 9th. You will do well and I have no doubt about it. I sense a very strong woman in you lady. Of course sometimes...just sometimes....I'd like permission to be weak, if only for a moment. Yes Satan will try his best to steel our joy. Oh do I know. Some morning when my feet hit the floor I say out loud---I choose Joy today Lord and Satan has been defeated. Happy 4th dear lady. Hugs and blessings, Cindy

FlowerLady Lorraine said...

Oh Debbie ~ what a wonderful trip you had. Congrats to your husband and his Dad winning first place and congrats to you also for stepping out of your comfort zone to play with someone who didn't have a partner.

You will be in my thoughts and prayers. My dear SIL had complete knee replacement surgery in Feb. and is still healing. The dr. said she is a 'slow' healer. You are in my prayers that all will go well and that your healing will move along smoothly and swiftly. The class you and your husband took for this surgery sounds like it was very good.

Glad you had this lovely vacation beforehand.

Love, hugs & prayers ~ FlowerLady

Laura Lane said...

May God heal you quickly, completely, and without any complications. Be strengthened and encouraged in the LORD JESUS. In Jesus' name I pray, amen.

Laura of Harvest Lane Cottage

Sylvia said...

Such a great post, Debbie. So glad you had a wonderful time with family. Praying your knee surgery goes good and you're able to climb that sand dume easily. life it's like climbing that dume, it isn't easy but our Father in Heaven has promised to be with us along the journey, he sees us through it.
I am enjoying more time with my hubby and getting closer with God showing me my priorities. Hubby is in Home Health Care and responding good. It's been several weeks since he's had a small stroke that effected his balance. Thankful for all God's blessings.

Hugs my friend.

Margie said...

What a fun and productive trip to Canada. If you ever venture down to the Greater Toronto Area, please let me know! I'd love to meet you and Kelly one day.

Big congratulations to your husband and father-in-law for their 1st place finish!

Best of luck with your knee surgery. Rehab won't be easy, but the improvement in your quality of life will all be worth it!

Pamela M. Steiner said...

So wonderful to hear from you, and know that you are safely back home, anticipating your surgery very soon. I will be thinking of you and praying for you as you convalesce. What a wonderful trip you had...such beauty to behold all the way! Thank you for sharing some of it with us! Would love to take such a trip someday!! Blessings to you now...prayers going forth.

Jill said...

Beautiful photos and looks like a wonderful trip! Keeping you in prayer for your upcoming surgery! Have a great weekend!


Kelly @ Homespuns 'n Hayfields said...

Hi Debbie, I didn't realize you had completed your post. You took such beautiful photographs. I love the flowers you planted, they are always so beautiful. I have always wanted a window box, yours are my inspiration. I'm so glad you got home safely and enjoyed some down time along the way.

I'm going to have to get busy with plans for our next shopping trip lol. And who knows, maybe work on my crokinole skills - just in case. Keeping you in my prayers for your up and coming knee surgery.

Love Kelly

Kelly @ Homespuns 'n Hayfields said...

Oh, and speaking of weather...it's currently 31 celsius here with the humidex making it feel like 41 celsius (107.6 fahrenheit). It's going to last for a few days. Ouch!

Pom Pom said...

Hi Debbie! Welcome home!
Where are you having your surgery? I'll be praying.

kitty@ Kitty's Kozy Kitchen said...

What a wonderful post on updating your life, Debbie! My prayers will be with you on your knee surgery. I loved how the nurse painted the picture of a sand dune for your recovery. How wonderful to help out your dear father in law, and then the 1st place for your hubby and his dad. That was so very special, and such a treasured memory. I am proud of you for taking the plunge and being a partner in the competition.
How pretty your flowers look and they will certainly cheer you as you recover. God bless you, my friend. xxoo

Anonymous said...

Dear Debbie...
what a beautiful post filled with lovely photos of God's beautiful creation :) I'll be praying for you dear lady in your upcoming surgery. Any kind of surgery is a chance to become still before Our Lord and allow Him to give us His Strength as we begin the recovery period. The sand dune imagery was a good one, since that is what friends of ours that have had that surgery, describe it as... much love to you dear lady, Maria

Simply At Home said...

Just lovely!

Jazzmin said...

Dearest Debbie,
I am ever so blessed by your beautiful photographs- they are just breathtaking!! What glorious captures of creation and the beauty around you... it brought such a smile to my face and heart today.
I also enjoyed so much reading your thoughts and reflections and about your trip, as well as being inspired by your giving heart and Christ-like attitude. & what wonderful time spent quietly with the Lord, even in the busier moments.

My mind is so refreshed and I find such joy in visiting you today and every time I visit :)
I wanted to also send many big hugs and much love in Christ to you and all my prayers from my heart during your surgery- it has approached so quickly since you first shared with us you were going to have surgery, and I know it will go by just as quickly and will be over and you'll be back on your feet before you know it, walking happily with sweet Donatella. Please know my heart and fervent prayers will be with you on the day of the 9th and now, before, and after as you heal.

Thank you again for how your post and photos blessed me and how your constant example in faith does, as well.
Love and hugs and many blessings!!

Laura Lane said...

How are you feeling now?

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